Indications Show Peace Now Front Group Being Laundered
(IsraelNN.com) The process of dismantling the front group used by Peace Now to receive US tax exemption status has apparently been stalled.
A resident of Ofrah, Dalia Laor, filed a complaint with the US tax authorities, against Americans for Peace Now and the Shaal Educational Projects group, claiming that monies earmarked for the educational organization were actually used by Peace Now for its political activities. Alleged discrepancies between the amounts reported to the US authorities and Shaal's reports to Israel's non-profit associations office have also been reported.
Recent revelations have shown that Peace Now in Israel is not actually a legal entity, and has raised funding via the Shaal educational association ever since the 1980's. Shaal's articles of association say nothing about political activity, and Israeli law forbids a non-profit association to deviate from its stated goals. Shaal's funding of Peace Now is thus apparently illegal.
Accountant Gabi Izak, who was appointed to investigate the matter by the Registrar, submitted a grave report on the link between Shaal and Peace Now. It appeared that the Registrar was about to begin dismantling Shaal as a result, following the precedent of Ir Shalem, another left-wing Peace Now-associated group.
However, recent developments indicate that the Registrar is changing his mind. Visits paid last week and this by concerned citizens - Dalia Laor of Ofrah and Dr. Jan Sokolofsky of Jerusalem - revealed that Shaal's file is unavailable for public perusal. The reason explained to them is that the file is "being attended to."
Sokolofsky told IsraelNationalNews that an office clerk told her, "This can mean only one of three things: Its name, or purpose, or articles of association are being changed."
The citizens expressed great concern that a Peace Now front organization is thus being "laundered." Laor says she will file an administrative court suit against the Registrar.
Peace Now has essentially set as its goal the removal of all Jewish presence from Judea and Samaria. It tracks Jewish construction in the area and has often sought out Arabs who then claim that Jewish-built land is actually theirs.
National Union party sources quoted in the Makor Rishon newspaper said, "Once again, serial law violators appear to be rewarded. Peace Now's activity has always served to fan tensions in Israel, and between Israel and its allies."